Gadolinium (Gd)

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Gadolinium 64Gd157.25

Gadolinium was discovered in 1880 by J.C. Galissard de Marignac at Geneva, Switzerland. Isolated in 1886 by P.E. Lecoq de Boisbaudren at Paris, France.

[Named after J. Gadolin, a Finnish minerologist]
  French: gadolinium
  German: Gadolinium
  Italian: gadolinio
  Spanish: gadolinio

Description: Gadolinium is a soft, silvery metal of the so-called rare earth group (more correctly termed the lanthanides). It reacts slowly with oxygen and water, and dissolves in acids. Gadolinium is used in magnets, electronics, refractories, neutron radiography, and alloyed with iron, for magneto-optic recording devices.

Gadolinium single crystal properties


State: Single crystal
Crystal structure: Hexagonal
Production method: Czochralski
Standard size: diameter 6-10mm
thickness 1-2mm
Orientation: (0001)
Orientation accuracy: <2°, <1°, <0.4° or <0.1°
Polishing: as cut, one or two sides polished
Roughness of surface: <0.03 µm
Purity: 99.99%



Further Materials properties


Crystal structure: (cell dimensions/pm), space group,
a-Gd h.c.p. (a=363.60, c=578.26), P63/mmc
b-Gd b.c.c. (a=405), Im3m
T(a->b)=1535 K
High pressure form: (a=361, c=2603), R3m
X-ray diffractions mass absorption coefficients: CuKa 439 (µ/r) / cm2g-1
MoKa 64.4 (µ/r) / cm2g-1
Neutron scattering length: 0.65 b/10-12 cm
Thermal neutron capture cross-section: 49000 sa / barns
Density: 7.89 kg/m-3 [293 K]; 2390 [liquid at m.p.]
Melting point: 1312.85 °C / 1586 °K
Boiling point: 3265.85 °C / 3539 °K
Molar volume: 10.00 cm3
Thermal conductivity: 10.6 [300 K] Wm-1K-1
Coefficient of linear thermal expansion: 8.6 x 10-6 K-1
Electrical resistivity: 134.0 x 10-8 [293 K] Wm
Mass magnetic susceptibility: +6.030 x 10-5(s) kg-1m3
Young's modulus: 54.8 GPa
Rigidity modulus: 21.8 GPa
Bulk modulus: 37.9 GPa
Poisson's ratio: 0.259
Radi: Gd3+ 97; atomic 180; covalent 161
Electronegativity: 1.20 (Pauling); 1.11 (Allred); £3.3 eV (absolute)
Effective nuclear charge: 2.85 (Slater); 8.22 (Clementi); 11.28 (Froese-Fischer)
Number of Isotopes (incl. nuclear isomers): 23
Isotope mass range: 143 -> 163



Biological data


Biological role: none, but acts to stimulate metabolism
Toxic intake: n.a.
Lethal intake: LD50 (chloride, oral, mouse)=>2000 mg kg-1
Hazards: Gadolinium is mildly toxic by ingestion, but is a skin and eye irritant and a suspected tumorigen.
Level in humans  
Blood: 0.39 mg dm-3
Organs: n.a., but very low
Daily dietary intake: n.a.
Total mass of element in average
[70 kg] person:
n.a., but very low


Geological data


Minerals:Many minerals are known, and aluminium is present in many other minerals
MineralFormulaDensityHardnessCrystal apperance
Bastnäsite  (Ce, La etc.) Co3F  4.9  4 - 4.5  hex., vit./greasy yellow
Monazite  (Ce, La, Nd, Th etc.) PO4  5.20  5 - 5.5  mon., waxy/vit., yellow-brown


Chief ore: monazite, bastnäsite
World production: 400 tonnes/year
Main mining areas: USA, Brazil, India, Sri Lanka, Australia, China
Reserves: c. 2 x 106 tonnes
Specimen: available as chips, foil or ingots. Safe.


Sun: 13.2 x 106 (relative to H = 1 x 1012)
Earth's crust: 7.7 ppm
Atlantic surface: 5.2 x 10-7 ppm
Atlantic deep: 9.3 x 10-7 ppm
Pacific surface: 6.0 x 10-7 ppm
Pacific deep: 15 x 10-7 ppm
Residence time: 300 years
Classification: recycled
Oxidation state: III

Source: Emsley, J. (1998) The Elements (3rd Edition)

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Overview of elements with access to our shop

1 18
2 13 14 15 16 17
Li Be B C
Na Mg 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 Al Si P S
K Ca Sc Ti V Cr Mn Fe Co Ni Cu Zn Ga Ge As Se
Rb Sr Y Zr Nb Mo
Ru Rh Pd Ag Cd In Sn Sb Te I
Cs Ba La Hf Ta W Re Os Ir Pt Au Hg Tl Pb Bi
Ce Pr Nd
Sm Eu Gd Tb Dy Ho Er Tm Yb Lu

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